CAIR-LA Hosts "Entertainment
Night for Civil Rights"
Zeke Hernandez with civil right award
Azhar Usman of “Allah Made
Me Funny” performs
Anaheim, CA: About 1,400
people attended the 2nd Annual Entertainment Night for Civil
Rights hosted by the Council on American-Islamic Relations
- Southern California (CAIR-LA) on Saturday, May 20, at the
Heritage Forum in Anaheim. CAIR-LA honored Zeke Hernandez,
deputy district director of LULAC, for his civil rights struggle.
Additionally, nine Muslim youths were recognized for their
efforts in civil, social and religious activities. Hernandez
and the youths also received recognition from the offices
of Congresswomen Loretta Sanchez and Linda Sanchez.
Civic Activism: First Place ($500) – Nour Kweider; Second
Place ($400) – Nedda Salimian; Third Place ($250) –
Social Activism: First Place ($500) – Genene Salman;
Second Place ($400) – Hisham Labanieh; Third Place ($250)
– Amina Abid
Religious Activism: First Place ($500) – Ahmad Almutawa;
Second Place ($400) – Marya Bangee; Third Place ($250)
– Yasmin El-Haj.
Shaykh Yasser Fazaga, religious director of Orange County
Islamic Foundation in Mission Viejo, Calif., served as the
lively and entertaining master of ceremonies. He thanked CAIR-LA
for organizing the entertainment night, saying, “It
provides clean, fun-filled entertainment for the entire family
and is a nice break from the more traditional educational
seminars and fundraising events.”
The shaykh introduced the highlight
of the evening, “Allah Made Me Funny,” comedy
troupe. Members Azhar Usman and Preacher Moss performed hilarious
skits and kept their audiences laughing throughout the night.
CAIR-LA originally expected 600 people, but the hall was packed
Saturday evening, with attendees thoroughly enjoying the comedians’
The night also included an update on the status of civil rights
by Hussam Ayloush, Executive Director of CAIR-LA. In his talk
on civil rights, Ayloush said although Muslims are the main
targets of civil rights violations today, by speaking up,
Muslims are defending the civil rights of all people in America.
He also stressed Muslims’ responsibility to speak out
for "all victims of injustice, regardless of who they
are, or what ethnic or religious background they represent."
He urged all citizens to "provide the checks and balances
for our government and leaders."
holding awards from CAIR-LA, and Congresswomen Loretta
Sanchez and Linda Sanchez for their community
Commenting on why CAIR
chose to combine comedy and civil rights, Ayloush stated,
“It is so easy to feel depressed and disheartened during
difficult times, especially for Muslims, who have to endure
Islamophobia and civil rights violations. In response to that,
such an entertainment night helps lift Muslim community’s
spirits and boost their morale.”
CAIR, America's largest
Muslim civil liberties group, has 31 offices and chapters
nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance the understanding
of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower
American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice
and mutual understanding. To read CAIR's Mission, Vision Statement
and Core Principles, go to: http://www.cair- net.org/default.asp?Page=About